Robson addresses the relation between affect and politics by offering a response to two contemporary Scottish plays, Swallow, by Stef Smith (Swallow, Nick Hern Books, 2015), and Heads Up, by Kieran Hurley (Heads Up, Oberon, 2016). Both plays offer visions of personal and political catastrophe, and Robson relates them to work in recent European philosophy and political theory. In particular, Robson turns to Jean-Luc Nancy’s rethinking of Martin Heidegger’s understanding of fear, relating the creation of worlds to what Nancy calls compassion. Avoiding nihilism, Robson argues that reading Nancy’s work alongside the two plays reveals how imagining the end of the world can paradoxically allow for a negation of the present in which it is possible to find hope.
|Title of host publication||Affects in Twenty-First Century British Theatre|
|Subtitle of host publication||Exploring Feeling on Page and Stage|
|Editors||Mireia Aragay, Cristina Delgado-Garcia, Martin Middeke|
|Place of Publication||London|
|Number of pages||18|
|Publication status||Published - 10 Apr 2021|